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US Judge Says Lawsuits Against Toyota Can Move Forward

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(credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

(credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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SANTA ANA (AP) — A federal judge in California says hundreds of lawsuits filed against Toyota over possible sudden-acceleration defects can move forward.

U.S. District Judge James Selna on Friday denied a motion made by the automaker to dismiss the lawsuits. Selna took a similar stance in November when Toyota made the same request. He will likely issue a final ruling within 10 days.

Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed since Toyota began recalling millions of vehicles because of acceleration problems in several models and brake defects with the Prius hybrid. Selna’s decision Friday dealt with claims made by Toyota drivers who said the problems caused the value of their vehicles to plummet.

The first trials dealing with acceleration issues are expected in 2013.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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